After hopes that the very well received Blade Runner 2049 would see its fortunes increase in its second week after a soft debut, I think it’s safe to say that won’t be happening. Not only did its 2nd week numbers drop by over 50%, it lost the top spot in the weekend box office to a weakly received horror film. Happy Death Day was primed for that Halloween bump and took in around $26.5m in its first weekend, which helps secure Blumhouse’s reputation as the horror house to beat, even in the age of It. The studio have had one hell of a year thanks to the back to back successes of Spliy and Get Out, and that looks set to continue with upcoming sequels to Insidious and The Purge, not to mention a little film called Halloween. Happy Death Day may not be a dazzlingly original offering but it is an original IP in an age of horror sequels so that counts for something.
As for Blade Runner 2049, it took in $15.1m, taking its domestic gross to just around $60m, which isn’t great for a movie of this budget. Honestly, I’m still surprised a sequel to a cult hit that flopped on release got this kind of cash behind it in the first place.
Coming in at number 3 is The Foreigner, a Jackie Chan action drama that did very well with male audiences and took in a respectable $12.8m, although it’s already grossed $100m worldwide from a $35m budget, with the lion’s share of that money coming from China, so US profits are just the tip of the ivory back-scratcher that keeps Jackie Chan in good health. The reliability of the hopeful goldmine that isn’t the Chinese box office hasn’t been a guaranteed smash for American studios of late, but it still packs a well trained punch at the right moments.
It is hanging in there at number 4 with an extra $6m. Expect that number to go up next week for Halloween screenings, while the rest of the top 10 was made up of older releases. The next new one was
Marshall, that kooky lawyer procedural starring Josh Gad as that guy you can’t help but wonder why the hell he keeps getting in the way of Thurgood Marshall. That took in just over $3m from 821 screenings, offering a solid per-screen average of $3702.
Sadly, another new release this week, Professor Marston & the Wonder Women crashed and burned, taking in $737,000 from over 1220 screenings. It’s sad to see a very well received indie film that has the post-Wonder Woman glow and wonderful story at its heart barely scrape a $600 per screening average. That makes it the 18th worst debut of all time for a film opening in over 1000 theatres. The ad campaign and title may have put some off but for me, I think the blame lies at the feet of Annapurna, the studio turned distributors who have struggled to mount effective marketing campaigns for their current films, including Detroit. So go see Professor Marston & the Wonder Women this week if you can.
You can check out the rest of the weekend box office here.
What films did you watch this weekend? Do you prefer birthdays or death days? Did Ryan Gosling get punched in the face by Harrison Ford for no reason or is that its own wonderful reward? Really, wasn’t a Thurgood Marshall biopic always intended to be a Josh Gad showcase? Is the flopping of Professor Marston & the Wonder Women proof we can’t have nice things? Answers in the comments.